Tyutin almost certain to go as Hossa creeps closer


Would you believe it? I worked today! And what I saw at the MSG Training Center should give Ranger fans a little hope.

*1. I’d be stunned if Fedor Tyutin didn’t play tomorrow.* The 23-year-old defenseman skated in a regular jersey today and was alongside Dan Girardi.

“We’ll see tomorrow morning,” coach Tom Renney said. “He’s likely going to be ready. We’ll make a decision on him in the morning but he looks good to go.”

As I wrote in Tuesday’s paper, Tyutin thought he was ready to go already but understood the coaching staff’s caution. “I probably could’ve gone a week ago but I probably wouldn’t have helped the team,” he said.

And here’s Tyutin on returning in the most important game of the season: “I feel confident in my teammates. I’m sure they’ll help me out and I’ll just try to do my best.”

As an observer, Tyutin seemed to have no fear or hesitation about tomorrow.

*2. Marcel Hossa looked like part of the team.* Brendan Shanahan missed practice today to rest, and it was Hossa — who also donned a regular jersey — skating in place of Shanahan alongside Martin Straka and Sean Avery.

Renney said Hossa won’t play tomorrow and that’s he’s unlikely to play on Saturday. (“We always knew he was about a week behind Toots,” Renney said.) So I asked Renney if he saw any realistic way that Hossa could play in the next two games.

“I don’t know if he’s a weekend guy or not,” Renney said. “But I think we’ll see him ready for the playoffs.”

Hossa was still on the ice when I left the rink before working on his conditioning. Renney said one of the big things for Hossa will be getting used to playing with equipment strapped to his knee.

*3. It’s worth noting: Petr Prucha was back on the fourth line.* Now, does that mean he’s in the lineup tomorrow for sure? Not definitely. But Prucha, who was a healthy scratch yesterday vs. the Islanders, skated alongside Blair Betts and Ryan Hollweg today. Colton Orr was actually in a tandem with the displaced Jason Strudwick at times, so you’d imagine both are out against Montreal and Tyutin and Prucha are in. Of course, that can always change before 7 p.m. tomorrow.

I asked Renney if he felt the team missed Prucha last night.

“I don’t think so. The lines were designed the way they were for a reason,” Renney said. “That was to make sure we were in a sound position, primarily without the puck, and I think we were OK there. You can always look back and second guess and wonder if. I’m not going there. We did what we did and that’s that. We’re going to come back against Montreal, get better we hope and get it done.”

*4. Lundqvist and the ice girls.* No, I don’t know what they are called, but the tightly-outfitted ice girls who take the ice at the Coliseum during timeouts unsettled Henrik Lundqvist — and not because of their attire. As you probably know, the Ranger goalie likes to stay in the crease during breaks and keeps his room a bit of a mess. So when the girls who are assigned to take the ice with shovels and brooms and sweep the crease came toward Lundqvist, he told them to go away.

I asked Lundqvist about it after today’s practice. He said the linesman backed him during the first timeout, but that the ref told him he had to move when the second timeout came about. Lundqvist was surprised.

“For 65 games,” he said, “I didn’t move. But suddenly I guess they changed the rule.”

In truth, the mild-manned Lundqvist didn’t seem too upset about it, but he was definitely a little confused. He said he’d never been told to move before, not even during games at the Coliseum.

OK, that should be all. Let me know if you have any questions in addition to whether or not I stand around all day twiddling my thumbs.

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  1. Salted Meats on

    Great update j0shy. I was about to bust on you for “no update” again, but looks like i checked the moment you posted…nice job.

    Question: Would you kick the ice girls out of your crease for eating ice pops?

  2. Thanks, Josh keep up the good updates. Avery call anyone a whiner today? lol…Just wondering if He was interviewd at all, thanks.

  3. How so like Renney to NOT admit he was wrong about Prucha.

    What did he do to Prucha’s confidence a week before the playoffs begin?????

  4. I asked Renney if he felt the team missed Prucha last night.

    “I don’t think so. The lines were designed the way they were for a reason,� Renney said. “That was to make sure we were in a sound position, primarily without the puck, and I think we were OK there. You can always look back and second guess and wonder if. I’m not going there. We did what we did and that’s that. We’re going to come back against Montreal, get better we hope and get it done.�

    Does this mean he thinks that Prucha is not in sound position when he doesn’t have the puck? And that Ryan Hollweg is better than him at such positioning? That’s insane. Does Renney even watch the games? Prucha has some of the best instincts on the team, and Hollweg happily takes himself out of the play all the time to deliver not-quite-so-thunderous body checks. Maybe our next coach will speak and act normally. At least we know when Messier is GM Renney won’t last, if he makes it that far…

  5. Gee, coach, did you miss having a 20 goal scorer in your line-up last night? “I don’t think so.” Nice. Way to make a kid feel wanted!

    Prucha’s “positional problems” are starting to sound an awful lot like Immonen’s “footspeed” issues. Maybe he hopes that if he says it enough all the fans will start to buy it and then won’t care when the kid’s sent packing.

  6. Brian…Good question. But I’ll tell you the truth: The more you’re around professional athletes, the more you realize that they don’t BS. It really is just one day at a time for a lot of them. They did take some satisfaction in creeping one point closer to the playoffs, and right now they are just focused on Montreal.

    I know it’s not exciting, but it’s true.

    I didn’t talk to Avery today. He only appeared briefly while Lundqvist was talking.

  7. josh he’s going to choke, because he won’t go there.What an intellectual sham.Professor Rainman better be right, or if I were him I definitely wouldn’t go there, he’ll be gone.

  8. Josh, How has Straka’s shoulder been holding up? Has he mentioned the injury or any pain from it?

    How is Rachunek fairing in his recovery?

  9. Jay…Straka’s been on the ice the last few practices, and he was obviously a huge factor in a couple chances last night, including Shanny’s shorthanded goal. I haven’t asked him about it, but you’d have to say he’s looked better.

    Also, Rachunek was there today lifting weights, but he still hasn’t been on the ice. Even after he’s on the ice, you have to figure it’s at least another week. Just look at Tyutin and Hossa. So I’d say he’s still a ways away.

  10. Prucha has a nose for the net…takes the body…has speed…and never quits on a play. His game is finally coming around after slumping a bit in his sophomore year and after Renney had no clue where to play him. He’s got his game going…enables Renney to have two distinct Power Play units…and Mr. Metrosexual decides to bench him. Wouldn’t be surprised if Prucha’s confidence took a hell of a hit last night. And Callahan…who was the best player on the ice by far for the Rangers…was nowhere to be found late in the game. And hardly given a moment’s look on the PP. As I feared…Renney would put his stamp on this team right when we didn’t need it most. I’ll say it again: Bad coaches can cost a team wins. Renney did it last night. What’s he gonna do if we now have to take on Buffalo? Or what if…we don’t make it into the playoffs? Still possible…because Renney decided to do the one thing he does too much of and isn’t very good at: THINKING.

  11. Thanks for the updates Josh. Of course, I think any reporter worth his salt is gonna look for a quote for Avery…I spit beer through my nose at his comeback for Nolan last night. Guy’s a quote machine.

    But what we really wanna know Josh…the hard questions….for us guys…

    Is he still with Elisha? And will she ever be coming to the Garden?

    See? A little levity helps every now and then. I’m going to tomorrow’s game…and hope to see us get a large measure of revenge against the Canadiens for spanking us so hard the other night.

  12. josh thanks for asking Renney about Prucha, but the answer wasn’t very good. Did you blame Sam for the question? He seems annoyed and defensive about it but it’s hard to tell just from reading it. He certainly didn’t want to elaborate or get any follow up questions. Sounds like an open wound to me. Let’s see if he can remember that lesson for more than 1 game.

  13. I know Prucha sitting was part of the reason – But I was really stunned to see Shanahan and Jagr on PP unit #1 (and only). What was coach thinking? That hasn’t worked all seas…all…ever.

  14. Avery Blasts Brodeur on

    If toronto loses tomorrow do the rangers clinch a spot regardless of what happens in their game?

  15. CJP…Avery’s one of the best pros to quote in all of New York right now, but you can’t talk to everyone at once. It’s just the nature of the job.

    bklyn…I don’t think he was as defensive about it as it may sound. I know it’s hard, but you have to think about it from his perspective: If he admits it was a mistake, isn’t he indirectly bashing a few of the guys who did play? And what coach would want to do that? It is a tough spot in that regard.

  16. Josh, kudos for questioning Renney on Prucha. His ridiculous answers just validated what an amateur Tomhole is. First, he ever-so-sensitively says “we didn’t miss Prucha”, then finishes up with an “and that’s that.” The last time he used that phrase was Oct. ’95, when he said “Kevin Weekes is our number one goalie. And that’s that.” Hardpressed to find a bigger tool than Tomhole in all of sports. And happy, happy, joy, joy, we’re probaby stuck with him for at least next season. Only in Rangerland.

  17. “If he admits it was a mistake, isn’t he indirectly bashing a few of the guys who did play?”

    So instead, he bashes Prucha, who bleeds blue every game. How lucky we are to have Tomhole as our coach.

  18. Josh – I don’t think its bashing guys who did play. Hollweg and Orr understand their roles perfectly well. They are pieces of the puzzle. It’s the coahes responsibility to assemble the best puzzle come GAME TIME. Renney is lucky (by his own statement) to have more options now that Avery is available in the puzzle…

    He blew it. Prucha should have played.

  19. Excuse me for going off topic, but has anyone ever witnessed a more pathetic SO attempt than Captain Canada’s last night???

  20. josh putting your 5th leading goal scorer in the stands or on the 4th line is a MISTAKE. Prucha belongs on the 3rd ine with Cullen & Calli, Orts belongs on the 4th .

  21. I think Prucha was is a victim of being a quiet kid who probably doesn’t speak up or give an attitude when things don’t go his way. He’s easy to push around and scratch!

  22. Bklyn blue I agree Ortmeyer on the 4th line makes sense. On occasion you can give him an odd shift on the 3rd line or 2nd line..

    Tyutin and Prucha will play that is good news..

  23. The probability is that Prucha will not provide much offense to the 4th line which makes it easy for Renney to scratch him in future and/or set him free,the fans won’t care by then as Prucha will already have been marginalised.

    We all know that there is only one coach in the NHL who would play Prucha on his 4th line.

  24. Malik's laser guided poke check on

    I hope Prucha gets traded, he does not deserve to be treated like shit as a reward for playing well.

  25. I don’t understand how a guy who scores 20 goals can be put on the 4th line and even scratched. does he get caught out of position some times? yes. but he’s a young kid he’s still learning, and he’ll never get better if he’s not put in the situations. i see NO REASON for ortmeyer to be on the 3rd line while prucha is riding the bench. prucha has 20 goals on the year while ortmeyer has what 2? you get plenty of defensiveness from cullen and callahan who can more than handle the zone if prucha makes a mistake. tom renney has absolutely boggled my mind this year. he needs to go

  26. take a close look at Renney’s words:

    “I asked Renney if he felt the team missed Prucha last night.
    “I don’t think so. The lines were designed the way they were for a reason,� Renney said. “That was to make sure we were in a sound position, primarily without the puck, and I think we were OK there. You can always look back and second guess and wonder if. I’m not going there. We did what we did and that’s that. We’re going to come back against Montreal, get better we hope and get it done.�

    He says, “I’m not going there. We did what we did and that’s that…”

    From “I” to “we”.

    what does it say?
    Renney is not big on taking responsiblity for a really stupid mistake.

  27. Renney had said that having Prucha on the line with Cullen and Calahan made the line more offensive, and he was looking defensively. If this is the case, he is relying on lines 1 and 2 to do all of the scoring. Come playoff time, it would be a mistake to have only 2 offensive lines. Right now, pounding the defense with offensive lines that have worked the last couple of weeks is probably the best way to go. Put Orty with Hollweg and Betts and that is a grinding line that will keep the other team in check, while still having the little chance of getting a garbage goal or 2 in the coming weeks. We need Prucha’s offense in there right now, plus he’s not all that bad on the defensive side.

  28. yah i’ve got a question. what the hell did petr prucha ever do to tom renney other than score 50 goals in his first two seasons playing all of 2 and a half minutes a game of balls to the wall hockey? tell renney the fans do not want to watch echlers anymore its time to give hoofweg and ortmeyer the boot

  29. It would only make sense, well to us Ranger fans that is, to put Tuts in for Strudwick since he’s not even eligible for the playoffs anyway. Then again, what makes sense to us wouldn’t make sense to Dr Renney and company. Though I’d personally pay to see Malik up in the sky boxes.

  30. Renney must have an issue with Prucha’s size and tendency to get pushed around. Remember last year when he was sent to Hartford for like 3-4 games in the early weeks of the season? He followed that by storming back and scoring 30+ goals last season. I don’t know what it is but Renney clearly has issues with certain players and then holds that opinion for a long time. To the detriment of the team, I might add…..

    Case in point, what the heck is he thinking playing Malik all the time and rewarding him with the “A” on his sweater on occasion?

    The guy is so out of touch with the team….

  31. Richtersgirl on

    If Renney had played Prucha and the isles came out looking for blood you guys would have been screaming why he didnt play the tough guys. Prucha prolly should have played but whatever, its over with! why dont we just look ahead to them winning on thursday then in the playoffs! Renney is right in theres nothing to do about it now its overwith. Rangers should have won the game anyway and Prucha being there or not being there shouldnt have affected it. They came out flat way too many times and didnt look like a team that really wanted to clinch the playoffs.

    oh and onto something completely different….is it just me or does Jagr really turn on his jets when he wants too. Boy if he only cared like that every game we would be in much better positioning. It’s like he thinks “we really have to win today so lemme start hustling and forechecking like i should be every game” reaallyy annoying

  32. Josh:

    People seem to be missing the a huge point (no pun intended) the Rangers lost because their powerplay did not convert vs. the AHL goaltender. Is there any chance they will be putting Cullen on the point and removing Rosival and/or Straka … If I am the opposition I ignore those 2 and collapse my box around the net and that is what is happening.

  33. The fact that no other player in the league who has scored 20 or more goals has less average time on ice than Prucha says something. Renney needs to be fired, I can’t stand him. If the Rangers lose on Thursday, don’t be surprised if they miss the playoffs.

  34. Josh,
    I think Koffy hit the nail on the head. The PP could not produce. I was at the game last night and that’s exactly what the Isles did… collapse towards the net. That left all the usual suspects holding still and passing the puck too much, like in the days of yore. when they keep moving while passing and take a shot every 2-3 passes, that’s when they score goals.
    Thanks for the update on the ice girls. We were wondering what was happening when we saw Henrik slash one of their scrapers.
    For all those who just watched on TV, you should have come. There were more Rangers fans the Isles fans, and there were many empty seats.
    One last thing… while I’m not a fan of Renney’s every decision, I can understand his dilemma. As is apparent in this, and just about every other blog, he is going to get criticized by some no matter what he does. I’d be more suspect of his motives or mental state if he’s trying to please everybody.

  35. Listening to XM radio, while scratching my head over the Prucha benching; Espo theorized that the only reason he could see for Prucha benching is that Petr has some injury or just banged up, and this being the time of year it is, that the team/renney did not want to disclose this …

    Josh, in being around the rink, any signs of Petr being banged up a little?

  36. Richter’s Girl: “why dont we just look ahead to them winning on thursday then in the playoffs!”

    Because the same guy (Tomhole) who cost us as much as 10 pts. this season with his horrific coaching and decisions is still in charge. That’s why? If he was gone and real coach took over, we’d happily look ahead with a helluva lot more confidence.

  37. CJP, Yea Avery must still be with Elisha, I saw her at the game last night after the warm ups. I managed to tell her to tell Avery for me good luck in the playoffs. I think shes at a good amount of the games at MSG just that shes not announced or shes in the green room, where a lot of the family/spouses stay during the game.

    The whole Lundqvist/Ice Girls ordeal was crazy. I was at the game last night and it seemed that on one of the first few commecial breaks, the Ice Girl with the ice scraper got close or even might have hit into Lundqvist’s stick. Lundqvist reacted by slapping it away with his stick. For most of the game after, if Lundqvist wasn’t by the bench for the commercial, there was sometimes a referee standing near the goal making sure things went smoothly. I really dont think Lundqvist should be told whether he can stand near the goal or not. Thats part of his game, his focus, his concentration. They can’t be messing with that, especially in the 3rd to last game of the Rangers season.

  38. Gravy…I don’t know about that. Prucha skated today and looked normal. Would he have been on the ice participating at full strength (including all conditioning drills) had he been injured? I don’t think the Rangers would take that chance with a morning skate and a game scheduled for tomorrow.

  39. To Richtersgirl,

    Sing Out Sista! Amen and Amen!

    You tell them!

    Women should rule the world and the NHL because we have the Commom Sense. ;)

  40. If Prucha skates on the 4th line, I’d be absolutely shocked. I think Renney will most likely skate him with Cullen and Callahan, and then skate Hollweg with Betts and Ortmeyer. I’m a big Hollweg fan, but he hasn’t been playing well lately and I think Renney needs to play either Hollweg or Orr on a regular basis – NOT both of them.

    As far as the Lundqvist story goes, I don’t blame him for being upset. He’s trying to stay focused on the biggest game of the season and you have these girls skating IN the crease, yet he has to move? Pretty ridiculous…

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